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I have a small, diligent moderation team for a game I develop for and run. They handle problem users and organize events. They also act as a bridge between the community and myself, such that I'm made aware of what the community wants changed/developed.

The player count is beginning to climb, and as a result, I'm becoming far too busy developing new features for the game, and no longer have as much time to look into hiring new moderators or manage the current ones. It's delegation time!

My goal is to determine a moderator that should become the "Lead Moderator" of sorts. They'll be given a few extra permissions, such as being able to see a detailed log of all moderation actions, and give or remove moderator access. They'll also have a binding decision when it comes to new moderator applications.

I have six moderators. All of them do their job well, and are the pillars for managing the community. Of those six, three moderators stand out a bit from the rest. They're more experienced, and are the people I turn to first when I want to know more about a given situation, or want a second opinion on a moderation action by another moderator.

What qualities should I be looking for to narrow my focus to one candidate? Should I ask the moderation team to elect one among themselves?

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There's really only two reasonable option, imo:

  • vote, or
  • assign

Vote

I would put it up for vote between your current moderation team - let them self-select who should be "promoted". Maybe even make it term-based (1 year, can't do it more than 2 times in a row, etc).

Assign

If you're the BDFL of the game and all its associated administrivia, you could just decide that Moderator J should be promoted.

I wouldn't do it that way, most likely, but you - theoretically - know your team the best, and you may feel this is better for your environment

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    I decided on the "Vote" option. By letting the team decide, they feel much more involved in the choice, and seemed to be comfortable with who was chosen. You make an interesting point about the term limit idea, I'll propose that later. Perhaps the others want a turn in the driver's seat.
    – Spevacus
    Mar 2 '20 at 15:24

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